Whether you’re new to fitness or you’re chasing new, harder goals this year, muscle soreness after a challenging workout can happen to anyone. Instead of letting sore muscles keep you from your favorite workout activity, sore muscles can be a sign that you’re moving in the right direction. Soreness doesn’t have to leave you on the sidelines. With FitClub’s tips for easing the pain of muscle soreness, you can be back at FitClub chasing your goals sooner than you might expect.
- Stretch. Too often we skip stretching before and after our workouts, which prevents our bodies from easing in and out of our workouts and allowing for soreness to creep into our muscles. Even if you’re short on time, committing to a dynamic stretching warm up and a slow, static stretching cool down, can ward off injuries and muscle soreness that come from increasing the workload we put on our bodies.
- Drink up. Drinking more water can prevent muscle cramps and naturally decrease inflammation that causes muscle soreness. Unless you’re training for an extended endurance event, water should be your drink of choice before, during and after your workout. Unlike water, sports drinks have added calories and sodium, which can put you at risk for adding more calories than you burned during your workout.
- Use the sore muscles. If you’re sore from a long leg day, the last thing you probably want to do is use your legs again the next day. It is, however, a highly effective way to minimize and eventually eliminate soreness in those tired muscles. Instead of redoubling your efforts the next day doing the same exercises, give that overworked body party a different workout. Yoga, swimming, and stationary biking are good low-impact, but effective exercises, that can rehabilitate tired and sore muscles. Just keep moving!
- Massage and foam rolling. The healing pressure of massage or self-massage with a foam roller helps to counteract inflammation and promote healing in sore and overworked muscles. High-impact exercise causes tiny tears in the muscles that grow back bigger, stronger, and more efficient. Unlike pain pills which mask pain but don’t accelerate healing, massage can reduce inflammation and pain, while promoting cell turnover which leads to healing. If you’ve been working hard for awhile, it is probably time to treat yourself with a massage at FitClub.
- Eat the right foods. Your muscles are only as strong and efficient as the foods you feed your body. Pineapple and tart cherries have enzymes that counteract the inflammation that’s causing your sore muscles. Adding pineapple and tart cherries to your smoothie, breakfast oatmeal, or salad can add flavor while feeding your body the foods it needs to recover.
What’s your remedy for eliminating sore muscles? Share your tips with your fellow FitClub members.